The 63rd Spring Graduation at the University of Guelph’s Ridgetown Campus, will be held on Friday, June 5, 2015.
The 293 graduates at Ridgetown Campus are completing diploma or certificate programs in agriculture, horticulture, environmental management, veterinary technology, performance horse handling, and veterinary office administration. Graduates and their families will be gathering in the Rudy H. Brown Rural Development Centre at 1:45 p.m. for the traditional graduation procession and ceremony.
Graduates finishing the Associate Diploma in Agriculture program, the largest academic program at the campus have numerous opportunities for employment, and many will go to work either in agribusiness or for their family farm business. Students in several programs finished their last academic semester with an industry work placement that often leads to employment.
“It’s with great pleasure that I recognize Ridgetown Campus’ most recent cohort of graduating students. I know they will go on to make significant contributions at their workplaces and in the communities in which they live,” says Rob Gordon, Dean, Ontario Agricultural College (OAC). “They join a strong network of Ridgetown Campus, OAC and University of Guelph alumni supporting the future of our agriculture and food here in Ontario and across the globe.”
“Graduation day is a milestone celebration as these individuals move from students to alumni, and begin to make their mark wherever they may be headed,” states Ken McEwan, Campus Director.
The Class of 2015 has selected Joseph White of Kinkora, ON to deliver the valedictorian address. Joseph is an Agriculture Diploma student who grew up on a dairy farm, Wexelm Farms, and he is currently working on the family farm operation. Joseph enjoys public speaking as well as auctioneering and this special honour will give him the opportunity to address an expected crowd of 1,200 guests.
Grant Craven, Vice President Production, PRIDE Seeds will address the graduates as the graduation speaker. Craven has a passion for family, farming and seed production. He grew up on a local farm in Eberts, ON and graduated with an honours standing from the agriculture diploma program at Ridgetown in 1982. He is the newest member of the Ridgetown Campus Agri-Food Foundation board, and is looking forward to the opportunity to ‘give-back’ to Ridgetown as the graduation guest speaker.
Prior to the student procession and graduation ceremony, a special Donor Appreciation Luncheon will be hosted to celebrate the on-going support of campus award donors. Awards for academic proficiency and student leadership will be presented to a number of graduates. “We are very fortunate to have the financial support from our alumni, community friends and many local businesses,” says McEwan. “This year, approximately $22,500 will be awarded to many deserving students.”